Shooting fashion videos mean that there are basically no rules – what you need is to find a way to make the clothes look amazing. In this video filmmaker, Valentina Vee from Aputure shows both a high-end version of a fashion shoot on location using a large number of lights and a more budget-friendly option using fewer lights.
In the higher-end version of the shoot, Vee used a light behind the model amplifying the windows light and an Aperture lantern above the model (with 1.5x CTL to warm the model) plus a gold bounce in front of the model. She also used a fog machine behind the model (with some visible fog again behind the model).
Doing a similar version of this setup with smaller cheaper lights is actually simple – you might need to bring the ISO a bit up but just replace each light with a less expensive and smaller one (Vee used the Aputure HR 672 + CTO as main and four Aputure MC small lights for some blue ambiance plus the gold bounce), it might not be as impressive but it still looks pretty nice.
The next setup is a bit more complex and Vee used two 300D IIs, four MC units for RGB and a single NOVA 300C unit. This one was a bit harder to create on a budget but there are some takeaways that might help you get your own shoot (either with more or fewer lights).
- Light for the outfit – this is a fashion shoot after all so the clothing comes first.
- Make your location work for you – even if you are shooting in a small space or a very dark location – using lights correctly can help you make the most of what you got – if the location doesn’t have a lot of light and you are on a budget shoot a more contrasty scene for example.
- Know when to use fog – it can be nice and add to your scene but too much use, especially if it does not contribute to the “story” you are telling can be distracting.